In his look at why L.A. District Attorney Steve Cooley probably lost the race for Attorney General, LA Weekly staff writer Gene Maddaus notes that the lawman kicked back like a longtime Washington incumbent, letting San Fran D.A. Kamala Harris make inroads in his backyard while his campaign barely unleashed any attack ads.

His main, last-minute TV spots about Harris painted her as soft on the death penalty — an advertisement that inspired at least one commenter to vote for Harris.

Commenter of the day Gemma says the ads, which pointed out that Harris did not pursue the death penalty against a San Francisco cop killer, actually helped define Harris in a good way:

Personally, I found Cooley's ads against Harris more compelling for Harris. I don't support the death penalty and through his ads I learned that she doesn't either. So, that helped open my eyes to her campaign. Sometimes the negative ads do a disservice to the person they're supposed to help.

If Cooley at one time had the state Attorney General's job in the bag, why do you think he lost it?

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